The responsibilities of will executors in Spain

Certain obligations must be fulfilled

LAST UPDATED: 4 Jan, 2017 @ 15:57
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Antonio Flores
Antonio Flores

UNDER Spanish laws executors who are named in a will –and do not renounce to their appointment within 6 days of being informed – have certain legal obligations they need to fulfil.


Article 902 of the Spanish Civil Code orders executors to fulfil the following duties:
Pay funeral expenses in accordance to the will or, in the absence of a disposition to the effect, following the custom of the village.
Distribute ‘cash sum’ legacies, with the knowledge and acceptance of the inheritors.
Supervise over any other wishes contained in the will.
Take the necessary steps to secure and conserve the estate.

These legislated duties coexist with many others not specifically contemplated by law but extensively accepted by case law:
Collecting debts and share dividends.
Renting out inheritable property for a duration not exceeding that of the term of appointment.
Taking an inventory of the deceased’s possessions and debts.
Giving beneficiaries notice of acceptance/repudiation of inheritance.
Similarly to other countries, the role of executor is gratuitous: he/she is not entitled to be paid unless the will specifies otherwise although costs incurred in by an executor can be claimed.


Executors can be made responsible for negligence in the provision of the services, where losses have occurred. Claims made against executors have to prove such losses.
Finally, the appointment of executor will finalize by expiration of his term, renunciation, death or removal through Court action.  

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